Headmaster's Welcome


A very warm welcome to our Admissions Update e-newsletter, designed to give you an insight into the Crescent and a feel for the richness of school life here. You will also find lots of practical information that will help you through the admissions process.

The first thing that strikes visitors to our school is the special sense of purpose that there is here, combined with a genuinely caring and nurturing atmosphere. Every child here is unique and everyone has their place in our shared community. Our caring and dedicated teaching staff are determined to go the extra mile to help children achieve everything they are capable of. This philosophy applies inside the classroom, on the sports field and in all of our extra-curricular pursuits as well.

Please do come along to our Open Day on Friday 4 October to meet me, the staff and the children. We look forward to welcoming you to our wonderful school.

Joe Thackway



Possible Additional Year 4 Class For September 2020

The Crescent School is considering splitting the Year 3 class into two smaller classes for the start of the academic year 2020-21 when they will enter Year 4.

The move echoes one made two years ago when the then Year 4 class was split into two smaller classes, a move that has proven very successful.

Comments Joe Thackway, “The two smaller classes will benefit from reduced class size and tailored input from our experienced class teachers and subject specialists at a key point in their journey towards the 11+ exams and independent school entrance exams. We have seen the educational benefits of this before and hope to be able to replicate it in 2020.”

Prospective parents who would be interested in a Year 4 place for their child in September 2020 are urged to contact Mrs Helen Morley, the Registrar, on 01788 523851 or email to register their interest.  A decision about the split will be made towards the end of 2019.

The Princethorpe Foundation Continues To Invest In The Crescent School Site

Over the summer break there were exciting improvements to the Crescent School site.

Over the holidays the IT suite was gutted and a new ceiling, lighting and flooring installed.  The room was redesigned and now has new furniture.  A new teaching space was created including an interactive teaching wall.

At the far end of the school, the Reception and Year 1 classrooms were also completely refurbished with new ceiling, new lights, new carpets and a fresh coat of paint.  The improvements provide an exciting and stimulating environment for our youngest learners.

A three-phase development of the main corridor, affectionately known as the 'green mile', commenced starting with the top section (from the Library down to the first set of Fire Doors).  Again a new ceiling was installed, with new lights, new flooring, built in display units and the walls repainted.

The work is all part of the Princethorpe Foundation’s long term estates development plan which includes significant investment in the Crescent School facilities.

Comments Joe Thackway, Headmaster, “It was all systems go all summer, with the work all completed in time for the pupils and staff return in September.”

Super Summer Concert Showcases Crescent's Young Musicians

Crescent School's Summer Concert took place on Tuesday 2 July.  It was well attended with the school hall packed with parents and family members eager to enjoy the end of term celebration of fine music and song.

As always the school orchestra opened the concert performing two pieces confidently.  Everyone enjoyed their uplifting rendition of ‘Chariots Of Fire’ and the popular ‘Match Of the Day’ theme.  The enthusiastic audience were then delighted by impressive group performances from Brass Group, Mini Brass, Wacky Music, Flute Group and the Year 5 Ensemble, interspersed with many wonderful individual instrumental solos.

The concert concluded with a rousing performance by the Choir.  Pupils sang four pieces starting with ‘We’re So Proud Of Our School’, followed by ‘Harmony Blues’,’ Why We Sing’ and finishing with ‘A Little Can Change Our World’.

It was another outstanding afternoon of music and song.  Our enormous thanks and congratulations go to all Crescent School's accomplished performers who took to the stage in front of their proud parents, and of course to all their teachers and Director of Music, Julie Barnes who have helped them achieve so much.

Honk’s Heartwarming Tale Is Class VI's Final Production

Year 6 brought the classic tale of the ugly duckling to life this week in their final end-of-year school production. 

Since it first hatched in 1993, Stiles & Drewe’s musical has charmed audiences with its heart-warming story, sparkling wit and memorable score.

It tells the story of Ugly, a cygnet who is mistaken as an ugly duckling. Teased by both his siblings and the barnyard animals, Ugly sets out on an adventure of self-discovery. On his journey, he meets a whole flock of colourful characters, including a sly tomcat and a company of military geese.

The children had worked incredibly hard with Drama teacher, Kim Thompson, to prepare this special performance and the talented cast rose admirably to the challenge.

Ms Thompson said, “Honk! is a popular, family-friendly show and was the ideal platform for our young actors to showcase their singing, acting and dancing talent. With its bouncing score and universal story, the play captured the hearts of all who saw it.”

Performed for the first time in the Clarkson Theatre over at Princethorpe College, the lighting and sound gave an extra special professional dimension to the performance.

It was clear the audience really enjoyed the show, their thunderous applause a testament to yet another super example of the school’s broad provision for the arts.

Headmaster, Joe Thackway said, "Huge congratulations to all the cast for learning their lines so well and delivering them with meaning, expression and great timing, what a multi-talented group of young people they all are."


Many thanks to all the staff and parents who helped with the production.

Pupils Win Medals At The ISA National Athletics Championships

Crescent School celebrated after Year 6 pupil, Olivia, won a Gold Medal in the 80m sprint at the Independent School Association’s National Track and Field Athletics Championships.

The school was delighted to have two athletes qualify for the National Finals and on Wednesday 19 June, Year 6, Olivia and Year 5, George, travelled to Birmingham to take part in the flagship event at the Alexander Stadium.

In a very close race, Olivia just edged ahead on the line to win her sprint in a super time of 11.32 seconds.

Fellow competitor, George, competed in two events the Long Jump and the 600m.  George jumped a new personal best of 3.85m to finish just outside the medals in fourth place in the Long Jump, whilst in the 600m he finished in 6th place with a time of 1.57.58.

Head of Girls Games at Crescent School, Rachel McCollin, was delighted with the children’s performance saying, “We always tell the children to believe in themselves and push beyond their own boundaries, and they certainly did that.  It was such a fantastic day, a well-run event and the children were simply incredible. We are delighted for Olivia and George – a gold medal and a personal best, a super result.”

Crescent Cobras Win Best Presentation In The Jaguar Primary School Challenge

Back in May, after all the preparations, the plans, the discussions, the designs and the build team 'Crescent Cobra' plugged in the compressed air canisters and got down to some serious racing at this year’s Jaguar Primary School Challenge. 

The challenge requires teams to research, design, manufacture, test, promote and race the fastest car possible using standard chassis and engine housing nets with a car body made only from card. It is a technical brief but one that has proven to really engage potential future engineers.

As soon as they parked up at Princethorpe College, the team leapt into action setting up their pit display. Crescent’s team boards and table displays looked smart and professional. Bright colours and eye-catching graphics told the visual story of their journey so far.

After a welcome from Mr Scopes, Head of Design Technology at Princethorpe College, they were on to their first assessment, the Portfolio and Pit Stop Display, the team took time to carefully explain their displays to the judges.  Then it was on to the Engineering judging where the team were examined on their car design and manufacturing process before the all-important Verbal presentation where the judges were looking at technique, composition and knowledge of subject matter.

During the day, the team also had to complete an Additional Challenge, a Design Technology Challenge to manufacture a carry case for their racing car.  The focus of the exercise was once again to test the team’s ability to work together, delegate, design and manufacture. 

Then finally, it was time to get down to the serious business of racing. This was, after all, what the whole challenge has been about. Team Crescent Cobras carefully set up their car for a head-to-head down the racetrack and prepared themselves quietly and calmly for the competition. The cardboard Formula One cars flew down the track recording lightning-quick times. In a matter of seconds, it was all over.

Standards had been incredibly high and after a day’s worth of demonstration, presentations and racing the judges got down to their deliberations and analysing the scores.  When the results were announced, Crescent were delighted to find out that they had won the award for ‘Best Verbal Presentation’.

Mrs Byrne who helped guide the team was jubilant, “It was an amazing day. Our pupils worked so hard. This was the first time we have entered this competition and the children were brilliant.  I am very proud of them all.”


Six Million Words And Counting

Last year Crescent Year 5 pupil Daniel read 55 books and over six million words over the academic year and topped the leader board in the school’s annual reading challenge.  His achievement was all the more remarkable when you see the sorts of books he was reading, with Shakespeare and Greek Classics all mixed in with the modern day mystery and adventure stories you would expect a boy to read.

Daniel was modest about his achievement saying, “I just like reading and I read whenever I can.”  He explained, “I especially like adventure stories, such as the Young Samurai series, I read one then I try something different and then I read another.”  Outside of school, Daniel reads most days but just like any other boy, he also plays sports such as hockey and cricket and even, when he gets the chance, enjoys sailing.

Senior Teacher, Sarah Lowe, who leads on literacy at the Crescent School, explains, “We have a very positive reading culture here at Crescent, it is cool for boys to read, some of our boys in Year 6 have the reading age of a 16-year-old.  There are so many good books out there for boys to read these days.”

The Crescent’s approach to literacy is supported by Renaissance’s Accelerated Reader system. Children take a quiz after reading each book that tests their understanding. Its approach promotes reading for pleasure whilst ensuring the children read appropriately challenging books.

Sarah, continued, “Pupils from Year 3 onwards take part in the reading challenge and can quiz daily on the computers before school. We find the boys respond really well to the competitive nature of the challenge.  It motivates them.  We like to get parents involved too and hold a week every term when Parents can come in and quiz with their children.  Daniel was our top reader last year and the first to ever reach six million words.”


Year 5 Enjoy Learning Japanese

Year 5 studied Michael Morpurgo’s novel Kensuke’s Kingdom and to mark the end of the topic they welcomed Mrs Knott (a parent) into school to talk about all things Japanese.  

Having lived in Japan for many years, she was able to give the children a fascinating insight into a culture that has remarkable similarities to our own.

The classes began by learning how to greet a teacher ‘Ohayō gozaimasu sensei’ and then explored just how many Japanese words they already knew – Sushi, Samurai and Pokémon to name but a few.

They found out that Japan is in Asia, is of a similar land mass to the United Kingdom, but has a greater population.  They learnt about the culture and how Japanese people have an animistic approach, which leads them to respect and show gratitude for everything.  Mrs Knott even taught the children how to bow properly and then how to count in Japanese.

In a break out session the children worked in small groups using abacuses to solve number problems, playing bean games with chopsticks and even looking at different sorts of Japanese food.

Deputy Head, Bryony Forth, commented, "It was all incredibly engaging and had the children and  teachers captivated.   Huge thanks to Mrs Knott for coming into school and running such an interesting and informative lesson."

U9 Girls Netball Team Are ISA Midlands Champions Again

Crescent’s U9 Netball team were the Independent Schools Association (ISA) Midlands Champions for the second year running.

The girls travelled to Stafford Preparatory School on Wednesday 3 April to play in the ISA Regional Netball Final.  Playing in the tournament were teams from schools across the region including Akeley Wood Junior School, Crackley Hall School, Mylnhurst Prep School, Salterford House School, Stafford Prep School and Twycross House School.

Over the course of the day, each school played six games in a round robin format.  Crescent’s girls played superbly, they were focused and accurate, showing lovely footwork, strong passing and accurate shooting skills. They won all their matches and conceded only five goals across the six games.  They finished the tournament in first place to take ISA Midlands title for the second year running.

Head of Girls’ Games, Rachel McCollin, was delighted, she commented, “What a great way to end the netball season and truly deserved as the girls have shown fantastic commitment and dedication.  I am incredibly proud of them.”

Crescent School Pupils Achieve Outstanding LAMDA Results

All 71 Crescent pupils who took the London Academy of Music & Dramatic Art (LAMDA) examinations in March passed.  68 pupils achieved a distinction and five pupils were judged as perfect receiving a phenomenal 100 score.

Children from Year 3 to Year 6 study for the examinations in their Drama lessons as part of the curriculum.  Years 3 and 4 take the Introductory level, Stages 1 and 2 respectively while Years 5 and 6 take the Communications - Speaking Verse and Prose, Entry and Grade 1 examinations. 

The children have to prepare poems to perform. They are judged on interpretation, technique and knowledge. They have to consider their diction, expression and movement and have to be able to discuss their choices of poems with their examiner.

Mrs Thompson, Drama teacher explained, “What’s brilliant about the LAMDA exams is that they equip the children with communication skills which will serve them throughout life.  They not only promote an appreciation of literature and poetry, but also help unlock their imagination and creative-thinking.”

The results were a reflection of their hard work both in and out of school – clearly all that rehearsing paid off.

Science At The Forefront Of Princethorpe’s Vision For The Future

Princethorpe is putting Science at the forefront of its vision for the future with plans for a new state-of-the-art Science building. Planning for the two-storey, £8 million building, which will see Biology, Chemistry and Physics sited together in one dedicated location, has now been approved and construction will start on the project within the next two to three years.

This is the latest in a programme of capital investment in the infrastructure of the College, including recent projects such as the refurbishment of the Clarkson Theatre and the Roundhouse for the Performing Arts, the Limes Building for Modern Foreign Languages, English and ICT and restoration of the wooded lake area known as Switzerland for outdoor education.

At just over 1,600 sq metres, the building will provide contemporary, spacious and well-equipped accommodation for the three Sciences including ten new laboratories, preparation areas, staff bases and toilets.

Comments, Headmaster, Ed Hester, “In a demanding world, where scientific progress is essential across the spheres of discovery, development and innovation, we need to provide the very best facilities for teaching and learning to stimulate the intellect, ambition and creativity of our pupils. This tremendous new building will enable us to do just that.”

The main entrance of the new block will face the Lime Walk and the side of the building will abut the existing Limes Building at the top of the North Lawn. The two buildings will be connected on both floors creating free flow for pupils and staff between them. The area in front of the new building will be attractively landscaped with a central square feature.

The project will also enable the College to redevelop and cluster other departments, providing permanent homes for Economics, Business Studies, Geography and Classics and dedicated laboratory areas for Academic PE. Plans are also afoot to provide additional catering and seated dining facilities. This last major phase of the upgrading of the school’s accommodation will benefit all of the College’s 900 plus pupils.

The project has been designed in collaboration with Leamington-based AT Architects.

Pinnacle And Minnacle Showcase Extraordinary Work

The Pinnacle showcases excellent and extraordinary work.  

The latest edition showcases ability and flair across many subjects and year groups, including an award winning poet and a number of Princethorpe's budding sports stars.  It also includes some superb examples of Modern Foreign Languages work and there is also coverage of the wonderful GCSE and A-level Art and Photography, which appeared in our Summer Art, Photography and Design Show.

A double-sized Minnacle is included too, with equally impressive work by Crackley Hall pupils from Nursery to Junior 6 and Crescent pupils from Reception to Class VI. It's wonderful to showcase their talents too!!

Click here if you would like to download a copy of The Pinnacle and here if you would like to see The Minnacle.